On June 4, 2005, at 1830 eastern daylight time, a de Havilland DHC-6, N3434, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain following an aborted landing at Hilty Field (OI68), Rittman, Ohio. The certificated airline transport pilot received serious injuries, and the second pilot, also a certificated airline transport pilot, received minor injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local parachuting flight, conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
During a telephone interview, the second pilot stated that the purpose of the flight was to perform an evaluation of the first pilot, who was recently designated by the operator as a backup pilot.
The pilots initially departed and performed three takeoff and landings, with the first pilot in the right seat, and no parachutists onboard the airplane. They then embarked passengers, and performed several parachuting flights. The pilots then decided that the first pilot would transition to the left seat. Two additional parachuting flights followed uneventfully.
Following the passenger drop on the third flight, the pilots discussed single engine operations. The first pilot subsequently reduced the right engine's power to flight idle, and feathered the propeller.
During the final leg of the approach to landing, the airplane crossed over a fence near the runway threshold, and the first pilot pitched the airplane downward. The nose landing gear then contacted the runway "hard," and the airplane began to bounce. After two bounces, the first pilot increased power on the left engine to "full," and pitched the airplane up. He then told the second pilot that he was going to abort the landing, and to reduce the flap setting to 10 degrees. The airplane continued to pitch up, yawed to the right, and "stalled" at an attitude about 25 feet above ground level.
According to a written statement submitted by the first pilot, following several previous flights, the decision was made to demonstrate single engine operations. He performed a practice single engine approach, and missed approach, between 3,000 and 4,000 feet. The pilot then performed an actual single engine approach to landing. During the entire approach, nothing unusual was noted. During the touchdown, "a slight bounce was encountered." The pilot judged that the groundspeed was too fast in order to land within the remaining runway, and elected to abort the landing. He added full power and initiated a climb, "at which time the aircraft slid off to the right which resulted in a loss of directional control."
The owner/operator of the airplane witnessed the accident, and described what he had seen during a telephone interview.
He viewed the airplane as it was on the final leg of the approach, and described that approach as being "a little long, and a little fast." The airplane then contacted the runway, and bounced three times, with the nose landing gear contacting the runway first, followed by the main landing gear. The airplane's pitch angle then increased, and the airplane "looked like it stalled." It then rolled to the right, and the right wing contacted the ground.
Another individual witnessed the accident, and provided a written statement.
The witness was driving on a highway adjacent to the airport, when he saw the airplane "coming down very fast." The landing gear contacted the ground, and the airplane bounced back into the air, then turned right. As the airplane was turning, it again began to descend, the right wing contacted the ground, and separated from the airplane. When asked, the witness stated that the airplane initially touched down about 100 yards from the runway end.
The wreckage was examined at the scene by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspectors, and no anomalies were noted with the airframe, or either engine.
The first pilot held an airline transport pilot certificate with a rating for airplane multiengine land, and a commercial pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single engine land. His most recent first class FAA medical certificate was issued on May 5, 2004. On that date he reported 10,154 total hours of flight experience.
The second pilot held an airline transport pilot certificate with a rating for airplane multiengine land, and a commercial pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single engine land. His most recent second class FAA medical certificate was issued on July 12, 2004. On that date he reported 6,882 total hours of flight experience.
The weather reported at Akron-Canton Regional Airport (CAK), Akron, Ohio, at 1851, included winds from 170 degrees at 6 knots, few clouds at 4,000 feet, temperature 79 degrees Fahrenheit, dew point 62 degrees Fahrenheit, and an altimeter setting of 29.94 inches of mercury.